KARACHI - Former Pakistan great Wasim Akram Thursday said players heading for the 2015 World Cup in Australia and New Zealand should sweat it out at a boot camp to boost their chances of victory.
Pakistan are in Group B of the World Cup alongside arch-rivals India, South Africa, the West Indies, Ireland United Arab Emirates and Zimbabwe. They open their campaign against India at Adelaide on February 15. To prepare for the challenges ahead, Wasim suggested a boot camp. "Since Pakistan have no cricket until October (against Australia in the United Arab Emirates) they must hold a boot camp on hilly areas just like Australia do when they go into an Ashes series," Wasim told AFP. The former skipper said that the country's cricket administrators need to concentrate on improving fielding and fitness. "For me the only worry is the 2015 World Cup will be totally different as grounds in Australia and New Zealand require great expertise and good preparation," Wasim told AFP. Declared player of the tournament for his 18 wickets in Pakistan's World Cup triumph in Australia and New Zealand in 1992, Wasim said it would be best to go to Australia early.
"I remember we went to Australia three weeks before the event and it helped us a lot," said Wasim. "The grounds in Australia need adapting to because if you are not used to them you tend to injure yourself." Wasim said Pakistan also need to improve their fielding. "When I am away I always ask experts to help Pakistan and recently I talked to Jonty Rhodes who is ready to help Pakistani players in fielding for a short period," said Wasim of the South African, regarded as one of the best fielders of his time. Wasim also added that Pakistan should forget the panic over their World Twenty20 flop in Bangladesh recently. "Australia and England also lost in the Super-10 stages but there was no panic like here in Pakistan. We took it to our hearts and the captain had to step down," said Wasim, referring to Pakistan's Twenty20 captain Mohammad Hafeez's resignation.